Sunday, November 30, 2008

Tribal Importance

In the past few days I have had the chance to connect with some of my communities in a personal manner. We all know about "tribes" on the Internet and how we connect very intimately with others all over the world who share the same interest, experiences and values thru Facebook, Blogger, Myspace and other community tools. Like most of you I am part of a number of these on-line tribes, and in fact the majority of my business comes from my on-line persona. While these communities are amazing for support and encouragement it really hit me yesterday how important the personal contact is, and how I have been guilty in the past of not spending as much time on my face to face relationships as my on-line ones.

Yesterday at the powerlifting club I was surrounded by people that have been involved with some pretty amazing experiences in my life. There were athletes who I had competed hard against, athletes who had competed in the same competitions at a club, state, national, and international level. Coaches who have lived and breathed my lows and successes. Athletes that I have coached and watched develop from novice lifters, and newer club lifters that I have seen improve over this past year. I have seen some of these people perform feats of strength and courage that I never thought possible.

My daughter is planning on competing at the State Rowing Titles next weekend and there are some logistics issues getting her there. When I dropped her off at the sheds at 5am this morning there was already a crew on the water, and about 40 people getting ready to go out. It suddenly struck me that this was her tribe and all of the experiences I have with my powerlifting community she has had, or will have with these rowers. At that point the logistics issues paled in to significance; I will get her there somehow because I know how important her tribe is to her life.

On the subject of tribes, I need to get over to Lindy's forum.

Have a wonderful day!


Saturday, November 29, 2008

Hard days work!!
I have just returned home from a Powerlifting competition, where my client Sue (above) had a HUGE comp and did a new total PB of 25kgs, giving her a total now of 297.5kgs. It was a great day with almost 20 lifters doing battle at the University of QLD Powerlifting club, in 34 degree heat and humidity.
Sue's last lift was an absolutely awesome 145kg deadlift - she really had to fight hard for it, and we both were very teary when those white cards went up!
Well done Sue, and we will be seeing you at Nationals next year!!

Friday, November 28, 2008

My TV replacement
We all survived our second night with out the TV, and while at times I did think "what have I done?" we ended up talking about life, listening to each others music and watching some hilarious Catherine Tate clips on Youtube.
Today I am off to buy a fish bow/tank. It will fit beautifully in the space and I may even be inspired to buy some indoor plants. I am one of those people that can kill a cactus, so my objective is to keep both the gold fish and any plants alive. ah....simple things that can bring such joy.

Thursday, November 27, 2008


The house has been without the huge TV(51") for 1 day. There is a big space in my lounge room, and tomorrow I will rearrange the furniture and buy a small fish tank!

So how has it been? 24 hours is no real time to judge, and I have caught myself thinking "I will just watch some TV", but I haven't missed it and my home is very quiet. I am guessing that I will be more productive, as I won't have the distraction anymore. I also worked out that without a TV, I also want need to pay for foxtel, monthly DVD rentals, and the electricity to run it all. This could turn out to be better than I thought.


Wednesday, November 26, 2008


I love this name and I guess it is very emotive, however this is how I felt this morning and quite a few other morning lately when I have woken. When I opened my eyes after 8 hours (give or take) of uninterrupted sleep, I had a feeling of expectation and energy. I was rejuvenated and eager to get into the day.

You all know I am always on about sleep, and it has been my experience that every person that I speak to hasn't had good quality sleep on a regular basis for years. While you may think you do, waking 2 times a night to pee is not normal, waking up feeling tired for the first hour is not normal. Your body needs sleep to rejuvenate, loose weight, build muscle, de stress and a bunch of other things.

It has also been my experience, in most cases, that the issue isn't getting to sleep. Most of my clients fall asleep pretty quickly when they hit the pillow, therefore traditional sleep solutions designed to make you sleepy and relaxed don't necessarily improve the quality of sleep long term. Most people in this modern world fall into "stressed and wired", or "stressed and tired". In the past I have been both of these and had patchy sleep and rarely slept through the night.

After frustration with no long term success after the use of teas, Valerian, baths, night time relaxation protocols and even pharmaceutical sleeping pills, I decided to take a different approach. So over the past 9 months I have experimented with many herbal and natural products, and methods that address the underlying stresses, rather than addressing insomnia.

This approach takes time and it certainly won't result in a good nights sleep the first night, however over a relatively short period some really good results can occur. One of the best products I have found that works for me is Serenity which is a blend of Chinese herbs designed to promote a sense of inner calm.
I am about to launch my "Sleep Solution", which will include key supplements, relaxation methods and advice on how to sleep like a teenager again! So stay tuned.
Well, I am off to jump into the day!

Good bye TV

Yesterday I sold my TV. It is a very large screen and it dominates my whole apartment, so I have been talking about selling it for months but I had not actually made an effort yet. I was talking casually about it in a business meeting yesterday and friend offered to e-mail his company to see of anyone wanted it - it sold in a few hours!

So my home is now about to be TV free as well as microwave and clothes dryer free. I will report back!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Hi, I'm Lisa’s 57 year old Aunt.

In my younger days, my life revolved around sports, training and competing up to a state level. My interest in the human body and health continued on, and I have been involved in teaching personalised exercise programs, aerobics, stress management, relaxation, personal development, and the beauty field. Many of these attitudes are still a part of my life.

My focus is on health and beauty from within which includes spiritual interests, exercise, balanced eating habits, hydrating the body and looking toward natural treatment and therapy when needing help for my body. Having a positive mental attitude has been integral in my life, as at times, as I am sure all people do, I have gone through difficult stages emotionally, financially and physically. By maintaining these values I have found that a problem is only a problem until it is solved, and this has allowed me to overcome many obstacles.

In recent years I have had to refocus, as going through menopause has caused many unique changes in my body and mind that is common only to these hormonal shifts, which I am presently addressing in a number of ways. In doing so I still enjoy a very high level of happiness, health, energy, and wellbeing. I believe having a humble attitude allows me to take advantage of any opportunity as it passes by my awareness.

One of my great inspirations in recent years has been my niece Lisa. At times when my motivation to continue on my regular daily routine has waned, I think of Lisa, her focus, and her discipline and this energises me to remember the benefits of making the effort, so I stop making excuses and I just do it.
Yours in health,


Monday, November 24, 2008

Toxic Cleaners?

I am always blogging about natural and organic products and how important they are for health. Of course all my personal products from tampons to toothpaste are organic, but over the past 12 months I have swapped over all my cleaning products as well. This is stuff like washing detergents, soaps, toilet cleaners, general purpose cleaners etc. Not only are these products environmentally more friendly they are much easier on the health of my family.
I was recently at the supermarket and I had run out of the general spray and wipe type product and I picked up a non organic product thinking that once in 12 months would be OK. When I used it 2 things jumped out at me straight away; 1. the smell of chemicals, 2. how incredibly effective it was.
When you use organic cleaners you need to use elbow grease but the non-organic cleaner got the bench tops clean and sparkling immediately.
I was standing in the kitchen where my family spends a lot of time, and I was applying a chemical to my bench top where we prepare our food. If this product was getting my bench tops this clean so quickly what where they doing to me? Where they being absorbed into my skin? Was I breathing them in? Maybe this small amount just once was no issue, but I then cast my mind back just 12 months and realised I lived with this all day everyday and surely over time they would have caused a build up.
I always put my good health, clear skin and boundless energy down to my diet, training and reduced stress but yesterday's cleaning incident really made me think about my wider environment.
I am not an expert on the toxicity levels of household cleaning products, but I certainly can exercise my choice, and on this one my preference is clear; natural is best.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

EnJOYing the things you do.

My few days rest have really taken me back to basics. I had time to myself and decided to do the things that I enjoyed. I did an RPM class on Saturday, and on Sunday I put my ipod on and walked to the gym, did a 30 minute cracking work out and walked home. I ate some wonderful clean food that I cooked for myself - just the way I like it, then spent hours each day resting, reading, and watching movies.

Having some 'me-time' got me thinking about how much I enjoy my life. Sure at times it gets a bit hectic and I do get stressed and tired (hence my self imposed rest weekend) but all in all I have it pretty good. I have gone back to an organised training schedule this past week and I simply loved my training. I have cleaned my food up to drop some bodyfat and I thoroughly enjoyed the clean tasty food I made.

I have made some trade offs to be able to enjoy my life as I do, and money is one of them. Cutting my job back to part time was a financial hit, however 6 months in I can tell you that my own business is tracking well and I get so much joy from my life that it was worth the sacrifice.

It is so easy going through life doing things that you really don't enjoy year after year and watching chronic stress build up as a result. We think there are things we have to do in life, and while some of that is true, have you ever asked yourself what would happen if you stopped?
I am not suggesting that we all drop out of the work force, but I am suggesting that you take a good look at those things that cause niggling stress every time you "have" do it, and see what would happen if you chose another way. Life is so precious, and it seems to me that so many people never get to really enjoy it when they should.

Friday, November 21, 2008

While I am taking a few days R&R I though it was a great time to post up some information on the Biosignature Estrogen Protocol that I am currently on. Today the article is on DIM, and while the first section is a little technical it is worth hanging in for the read. The protocol is designed to decrease body fat scores in the lower body, however the protocol has supplements that provide significant other benefits as you will see......

DIM - A Great Plant Indole

by Charles Poliquin

A Plant Indole For Your Protection - Answering your questions about DIM

Participants in our Biosignature seminars will be familiar with DIM or Diindolylmethane. This article discusses this plant indole in greater detail.

What exactly is DIM?
Plant indoles, also know as glucosinolates, are found in cruciferous vegetables and provide a host of health benefits to humans. Cruciferous vegetables are known for their many roles in cancer protection. Two such indoles provided by cruciferous vegetables are I3C (Indole 3 Carbinol) and DIM (Diindolylmethane).
DIM is not naturally present in these plants. It is released with the help of enzymes upon crushing of the broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage or brussel sprouts or during human digestion.
Stomach acid, or HCl, can also aid the joining of two indole 3 carbinols to make diindolylmethane. Lack of HCl will hinder one's ability to make DIM from I3C. If you are deficient in stomach acid (see my article on that topic), getting rid of lower body fat may be an issue.
Basically, DIM is two molecules of I3C combined together. I3C in a capsule is not shelf stable because it is sensitive to light, heat and moisture. I3C is irritating to the stomach. Research tells us that it can have very negative side effects in doses over 300 mg daily such as dizziness and unsteady gait, which may be due to nervous system toxicity. One study shows evidence that 90% of orally consumed I3C converts to other compounds. Perhaps it is these other compounds that cause these side effects. One compound I3C converts to is ICZ, or indololcarbizol. This compound causes DNA damage. DIM studies show no toxicity when given triple the dose in humans.

Is DIM Hard to Absorb?
Due to its crystalline structure, oral absorption of DIM in a capsule is minimal, similar to CoQ10. DIM absorption can be greatly enhanced by emulsifying it with lecithin in rice bran oil, including with it compounds that hold it in solution such as beeswax, and finally adding fat-soluble nutrients that aid absorption through the gut wall. DIM•AvailTM is a unique combination of such ingredients. We use the same technology to make our CoQ10 more bioavailable in comparison to powdered CoQ10 and sublingual forms.

How to Take DIM Avail?
Patients should expect to get therapeutic results taking DIM Avail at the recommended dose of 1 to 2 soft gels per day taken with breakfast or dinner.

What Actions Does DIM Have on the Body that make it Beneficial to our Health?
It has been suggested that a low level of the 2-hydroxyestrogen metabolites (2-OHE) and a high level of 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone (16 alpha-OHE1) is associated with an enhanced risk of breast cancer. DIM increases hydroxyestrone and therefore improves the 2/16 hydroxyestrone ratio, making it very protective for women at high risk for this condition.
Research by Bradlow says that DIM also reduces availability of 4-androstenedione for aromatization to estrone. He concludes that DIM is more potent than I3C at protecting against mammary carcinoma due to decreased formation of 16 alpha-hydroxyestrone from estrone.6
Doesn't Research Support the Use of I3C for Cancer Prevention Such as Breast Cancer?
There are positive studies on supplementation of I3C because they are looking at limited parameters such as improvement in the 2/16 hydroxyestrone ratio. When we take a broader look, however, I3C raises 4-hydroxy estrogen with the potential of aggravating cancers such as breast, endometrial and prostate cancer.
I3C increases 4-hydroxy estrogen production in animals and in humans. 8 DIM does not. 4-hydroxy estrogens and CYP1B1, the only CYP source of 4-hydroxy estrogen, have both been implicated in the causation of prostate and breast cancer in humans. 4-hydroxy estrogens and CYP1B1 are also implicated in the causation and growth of uterine fibroid tumors and endometriosis.
Researchers from the Department of Pathology, Sasaki Institute, Tokyo, Japan concluded the following: “These results suggest that induction of the CYP 1 family in the liver and sequential modulation of estrogen metabolism to increase 4HE might play a crucial role in promoting the effects of dietary I3C on endometrial adenocarcinoma development.”

Should Men Take DIM?
Men who wish to prevent prostate cancer and men with a family history of prostate cancer should take DIM. Men who have a problem with aromatization of testosterone would also benefit from using DIM.

What about the role of DIM in Biosignature?
If your hamstrings and quadriceps score are elevated in relation to the triceps reference score, DIM helps reduce those scores. I recently had National team female weightlifter reduce her lower body fat significantly by adding DIM to her supplement protocol. DIM is a favorite of female physique competitors to help get their legs shredded.

Males who have elevated scores in the pectoral skinfold in relation to the triceps skinfold also benefit from the use of DIM.

For more information on DIM or any other Poliquin Product just drop me an e-mail! (you will find this on the left hand side bar in my profile).

Happy Saturday!


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

It's all about me!

The weather here in Brisbane is giving me a hard time. It is ranging from hot and sticky, to wet and sticky, to cool and pleasant all in the past few days. I am already a little weary from the 4.30am starts to take Charlotte to the rowing sheds, plus my usual activities, and the weather has just topped it off for me.

So this weekend is rest and recovery! I have no social plans and anything I agree to do will involve exercise to raise my energy levels. This is likely to be an RPM class one day and a walk the next day with my girlfriends. I am going to be quite selfish this weekend and focus on my stuff only. I will start the weekend off by buying all my favourite organic food to stock the fridge. Then I plan to go to the gym, put my ipod on high volume and train my butt off. I will have a sauna and massage, and then stay inside with the air con on lying around reading and listening to music for the rest of the time. Heaven!!!

When next week rolls around I will be rested, relaxed, de stressed and I will have heaps of energy for all the other people in my life, but for now...."it's all about me"


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Can diet soda make me fat?

This is an article from Charles Poliquin' site about diet drinks. It is a very interesting read.

by Dr. Jonny Bowden

We already know about the link between soda drinking and obesity. But diet soda? Yup. Two years ago, a study at the University of Texas Health Science Center found that there was a 41% increase in the risk for being overweight for every single can of diet soda a person consumed daily.

And brand new research published July 31 in the medical journal Circulation shows that people who drink more than one soda a day- whether it's regular or diet- have an almost 50% increased risk for metabolic syndrome, which doubles their risk for heart disease and diabetes.

But how can something with no calories increase the risk for obesity and heart disease?

There are several possible ways.

First the obesity connection. My own theory is that the sweet taste works in the brain to create a conditioned response, and the body responds as it usually does to normal sugar- with insulin, the fat storing hormone. Those circuits in the brain are pretty primitive and ancient, and they can't immediately distinguish chemical fakery- as far as your brain is concerned, sweet means sugar. It's entirely possible that physiologically, you would respond to aspartame in the same way as you would to table sugar. It's only a theory, but it makes sense.

Second, sugar creates it's own cravings. Just as a taste of rum creates an unstoppable craving in an alcoholic, it's entirely possible that the taste of sweet- even if it's fake- creates the same cascade of cravings in a carb addict that regular sugar does, leading to overeating and binging and all the rest of the reasons people put on weight.

Third, many people think that by drinking diet beverages they're "saving" calories and they subconsciously allow themselves to eat more, figuring it's not doing as much harm because overall their meal has less calories since they're drinking a diet drink. The diet drink gives them subconscious "permission" to eat more. This isn't conscious, but it's totally real.

Then there's the heart disease connection. Aspartame is primarily made from three ingredients- aspartic acid, phenylalanine and methanol. Methanol- an alcohol- breaks down in the body to formaldehyde, a poison if there ever was one. Apologists for aspartame say that it doesn't create enough formaldehyde in the body to make a difference or cause any damage, but I'm not so sure. Exposing children to formaldehyde levels as low as .75 mg daily for several months has been shown to cause gradual toxicity. Plus, diet soda is frequently stored in hot warehouses, causing breakdown that went undetected in the original safety studies that looked at "ideal" conditions.
The bottom line: Soda is bad news, whether regular or diet. Period

Monday, November 17, 2008

The weighty question

I woke up yesterday and decided that I was ready to get into my next phase. Since finishing my competitive season over 7 weeks ago I have been relaxed with food and exercise. I now feel that I am the point where I am happy to put a bit of focus back on an organised training and nutrition plan. I am certainly not about to go head first into hard training, but a technically good program that will keep me strong and fit and add some variety to my usual training.

I am a strong believer in measuring and tracking results, if you want to replicate your results you need to know what does and doesn't work for you. More importantly if things aren't working you need to know what to change. So the night before I dug my scales out of the top of the cupboard and got my camera ready to have some front and back pictures taken. I also logged my food for the day to see what calorie range I was in.
During my competitive season I keep my scales in the bathroom as I weigh myself daily to track my progress for my weight division. I am not emotionally attached to the scales as I have seen daily gains and losses for many years now, and I can tell you what effect different foods and activities will have on my weight the next day. So I jumped on the scales guessing the range I would be in, and was a surprised to see that I was a few kgs heavier than expected. My clothes are tighter and I can see that I have added some weight, but I am sure I have reverse body dysmorphic disease as when I look in the mirror I certainly don't see myself as that much heavier. So the question begs...
"Should we weigh ourselves daily to keep our weight in check? "
I have read studies and newspaper articles based in studies that say that people who weigh themselves daily or regularly are lighter and have more success with their weight loss attempts. I agree that as a daily measure it is good tool, however I also strongly believe that unless you have no emotional attachment to your scales it can also develop some pretty serious obsessive behaviour. So this is my test, if your happiness and self worth for the day is determined in the bathroom at your morning weigh in, you need to stay off the scales and get some perspective. However if you stand on them, take note and then go about your day, you are in good shape and feel free to jump on regularly.

We all need small checks on our life and this is what the scales are, a small check of our weight not a barometer of our happiness.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Limitation by labels

My friend Krista Schaus, won a Bodybuilding competition yesterday in Canada. Just 6 weeks earlier she won another competition, and 4 weeks ago she won a powerlifting competition while setting a deadlift record for her Province. While there may not be anything news worthy to the general population in this news, she had just blown away 2 stereo types and some pretty seriously beliefs. Beliefs such as training for powerlifitng and bodybuilding are so different they are mutually exclusive, and it is not possible to stay lean and muscular enough to compete in several bodybuilding competitions over several months.

Krista's achievements got me thinking about labels, and how we like to identify with particular parts of our lives, "I am cyclist", "I am a mother", "I am an accountant". When we take on these labels we take on the culture associated with them (you see all the cyclist on the weekend with the special clothes and bikes etc), which is great however part of the label also includes stereotypes and limitations. It is not so much a concern to me what limitations other people put on me, but the ones I my put on myself.

Am I limiting myself with my own labels?

This past year I have transitioned from working full time in the corporate world to part time while I started my own wellness business. At one point I was ready to leave my corporate job completely as I felt I couldn't do both. Fortunately I recognised (just in time) that it wasn't that I couldn't do both, it was that I believed both labels had limitations that made them mutually exclusive. My 2 jobs give me a balanced perspective on life and a greater understanding of people in general, and I enjoy them both. Remove the label, remove the limitation. I haven't done any powerlifting style training in 6 weeks, however I trained on Saturday and my bench was awesome. It shouldn't have been but it was.

I see many Figure girls that hold their labels so tightly that it not only imposes limits on their lives, it controls their lives. What they weigh, their body fat, their food is so in focus all year round that they forget about the other things they are.

Removing your labels doesn't mean you change the things that you do, it means you change the way you think about the things that you do.


Saturday, November 15, 2008

A must have in your weekly food plan
I am a huge believer in eating a treat here and there to keep you sane and enjoying your food. We can be healthy and lean without living on chicken breast, egg whites and broccoli. My personal favourite is dark chocolate due to the high levels of antioxidants, potassium and magnesium. The magnesium, a muscle relaxant, is very helpful for PMS as is the serotonin which just makes you feel better.

As with all my top foods you need to look for organic products, and today I have the absolute pleasure of tasting the Loving Earth Raw Dark Chocolate bar. I am thinking I have a new favourite. This is what Loving Earth say about it on their website.

Raw chocolate is a simple yet revolutionary approach to chocolate. It contains no sugar or dairy and is suitable for vegans, it is essentially uncooked, unprocessed chocolate in its pure rich essential form sweetened with agave syrup (a natural low GI sweetener). It is a wickedly decadent healthy treat. The cacao is never heated above 45ÂșC from the time it is picked from the tree to its final state in the chocolate bar and this means that its wealth of phytonutrients are fully intact. Raw chocolate has been tested to have up to 4 times the antioxidants of conventionally processed chocolate


My sister Helen lives around the corner from my place, and in the past couple of weeks she has been in between contracts, so I have been hanging out with her more then usual. We haven't been doing anything special, just breakfast and going to the gym together and she has been helping my with the taxi duties of driving the kids around.
Yesterday I drove across town to participate in one of Liz Nelson's RPM classes, and Shelley and I sat next to each other while Liz gave the class a thorough spanking. After class Liz and I had a coffee, then I drove home and had lunch with my Helen and Charlotte. This morning I have 9am walk followed my breakfast with another girlfriend.
To chase your dreams and goals you often need to travel and live away from your family and friends, and even when you are still in the same city, commitment to a lifestyle or career can put a distance between you and the people who mean most to you. It is so easy to get too tired and lazy to call, and it is not until you reconnect with your girlfriends that you realise how good it is for you.
Life balance is really where it is for me, and this is what my girlfriends give me. We laugh, we eat, we play, we talk about life and our ups and downs. I can rely on them to congratulate me on my achievements but also to give it to my straight when it is needed. Talk about stress release.
Being strong and beautiful requires you to train, eat well, supplement appropriately, stress less, and have great quality sleep. However this is a reminder to me more than anyone, that all these things can create a balanced environment, but if you don't have friends to share with there really is no point to it.

Friday, November 14, 2008

What was on the menu yesterday?
Breakfast: oats, pea protein powder, blueberries, honey & long black

Snack: 30gm mixed raw nuts

Lunch; 3 scrambled eggs, smoked salmon and spinach

Snack; 50 gms nuts, WPC shake

Dinner; grilled chicken w 3 beef rice paper rolls

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I'm not kidding. But I hate to tell her she's always right too - because even though I hate taking them, they work awesomely, so I'll just keep on complaining...

By the way, if you weren't aware, its Charlotte, Lisa's pretty awesome teenage daughter. I'm 16 (as you might know), in grade 11, and am pretty sure my Mum is crazy. But I deal with it.
So when Mum asked me to write something for her blog on being healthy and active, I was more interested in 'Style by Jury' on TV than fitness and health, haha. But seeing as it's such a big part of my life, it's not the hardest thing to write about (and I still get time to watch Style by Jury!!!).

I row (in a boat, just to clarify)... which is almost as crazy as powerlifting, haha. I train 7 times a week, twice a day Monday, Wednesday and Friday, and for a double session on Saturday mornings. Getting up at 4:30am can be tedious sometimes, especially with school and stuff - but after training, albeit being tired, you always feel awesome, yeah? With Mum around we eat healthy heaps, and when I don't, it kind of shows - I don't look or feel as good as I usually do (and I ALWAYS look good ;D). Mum's daughter.

I'm currently training for the Australian National Rowing Championships in March next year (still a maybe, haha), in the U19 div, and am training my butt off, and when it gets a bit closer to comp time, will step up my training and lean down a bit - but for now, training's for fun, general fitness, and to get faster and stronger!!! Wooooohooooo.

...and I suppose it's good to have a Mum who's already awake at 4:30 who's willing to drop me there too...

Peace & Love,
Charlotte :)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Inner Beauty

I woke this morning thinking about how what is on our inside reflects strongly on the outside. The reason for my thoughts was a discussion I had with a friend just before I went to bed last, and an incident with her teenage daughter. When I opened my eyes after sleeping well, my mind went back to the discussion and my immediate thought was that I bet there wasn't much sleep in her house last night. I know my friend well, and the "discussion" with her daughter would have been intense, loud and dramatic. Her daughter is strong and stubborn so it would have come from both sides.
Neither of them would have slept well and the stress monster would have been churning all night long. This morning she will have bags and sadness in her face that won't do her any favours. She will skip breakfast and go to work in a bad mood and will inadvertently spread that negativity all morning. At morning tea she will talk about the incident over a coffee with a work mate, and eat a muffin because she is now starving as her appetite is back.
So she has let herself be stressed for hours on end, has had no or little sleep, skipped healthful meals and ended up putting only ageing foods into her body.
Sometimes horrible things happen, but if you react like this to everyday stresses - like a petty fight over your teenage daughter not calling you - you are creating an ugly inner you.
It may seem flippant to suggest that we should handle our conflicts differently so they don't reflect on our faces and on our butts, however we don't seem to pay attention to the fact that treating our minds and insides badly will cause health issues. So when you look at that bottle of wine and plate of dips after a tough day, or when you wake after tossing all night and you tell yourself you can't face eggs for breakfast let alone take your fish oil, I want you to remember one thing; an ugly inside equals an ugly outside!
I want to leave you with a quote from the fabulous Krista Schaus....

"Patience. You must be patient and allow the fat loss process time, as often our most stubborn areas are the last to go. Often we bail out or give up on a method or protocol if we don't see immediate results. Remember that what you see visually on the outside is a reflection of what's going on inside physiologically, so give the process time to work from the inside out. "Krista Schaus

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Breath and reboot!

This morning I woke up feeling a little tired, I still have a niggling injury in my right elbow and I just didn't feel like going to the gym or even getting out for a walk. As I am training to keep fit right now my plan is to get in 3 weights sessions, 2 interval training sessions and a walk or 2 each week. I have done 1 of each and am due to hit the gym today. Maybe I will get there this afternoon but it won't happen this morning.

Even though I have no real need or commitment to do the session this morning I have this small feeling of guilt in the pit of my stomach; the stress monster stirring around saying "you said you were going to go, you're being lazy, you will put on weight..". I know all of this is not true, and I know that right now my body is telling me it needs to rest.

However I was wondering how much more damage am I doing to myself letting cortisol flood my body so early in the morning? This going to set my hormonal profile for the rest of the day, so why am I feeling guilty?

Is this how we end up living with the chronic stress that does so much damage to our health? Do we consistently go through our day being disappointed by our self imposed expectations?

So here I sit, feeling guilty and stressed and it was all my own creation! This is crazy, so I am about to take a few depth breaths, eat a yummy breakfast and enjoy having an extra hour to myself this morning. So right now I am going to borrow a line from Carrie Bradshaw.............. It is time to breath and reboot.


Monday, November 10, 2008

photo by Dallas Olsen

My Story.
I have decided to post my story again as I have recently had quite a few new readers to my blog. So grab a cup of green tea.......
I remember swimming laps in my family’s seven metre above-ground pool when the Olympics were on, thinking that I could be an Olympic champion. My relatives used to say I was a chubby kid; I used to hear them but I never really listened.

I grew up in a small town and I always wanted more than it had to offer . . . I wanted to achieve great heights. Somehow I always new I would. My mum was a major influence; she used to always tell me I was beautiful and intelligent and I could do anything I wanted . . .I am not sure who first called me "Wonder Woman", but it was quite a few years ago now as someone looked at all the things I did and wondered how I not only got them all done, but how I also maintained a successful career. The answer to "how" is massive amounts of energy, an unstoppable desire to make the most of my time in the world, precision timing and sacrifice. However, it wasn’t always like this.

In the late 1990s, I remember watching Demi Moore in GI Jane and “those abs”. I wanted that fabulous six pack and to be strong, tough, yet still feminine like Demi. However, at the end of each day after working in my stressful IT sales job and picking the kids up I was so tired that I sat on the couch had a few drinks and nibbles and “relaxed”. The next morning I would look at myself naked in the mirror and say today was the day I would gain control of how I looked. I did regular exercise, I even did a few corporate triathlons at one stage, but on the weekends or at night I still had those few drinks and other treats. I deserved it right? After all, I worked really hard, I looked after the kids, I was only a few kilos too heavy, and well, I’m sure there were plenty of other justifications and excuses.

Then one day I woke up and realised that at 32yrs old, 63kgs and 30% body fat, Demi’s abs were never going to magically appear for me. I was going to have to make some drastic changes. I am not sure if there was an incident that inspired the change, but I do remember that day like it was yesterday. Something had lit a fire inside me and I knew that I deserved better than what I was giving myself. I finally understood that all the responsibility to change was with me.

Over the next 4 months I trained weekly with a PT, I read books and magazines; I talked to people about fitness and health, and did a 12 week challenge and successfully dropped my body fat to 22%. The journey had begun. My self esteem increased, I became more successful in my job and life was getting better. At that time I was training in a bodybuilding gym, and around comp time when the girls were leaning down I came face to face with Demi’s abs. That was it for me, I decided that to gain my long term desire of the six pack I would become a figure body builder!

So two years after getting into pretty good shape for a 30 something mother of two, I decided it was time to “get serious”. We had made a move from Melbourne to Brisbane, so I did some research and found myself a trainer who could take me from what I was to figure competitor. Nunzio was a former Mr World, and he created amazing changes in the first month of training with him. As I had been weight training for two years I had some muscle to work with, and being the focused type I embraced the nutrition changes with open arms. Within the first month I dropped 3kgs, and I had a visible 4 pack – a little soft but it was there. GI Jane was on her way.

In December 2002, one month after starting with Nunzio, I was struck down with a mystery illness and was hospitalised. I had extremely high fevers, was covered in a rash, and my whole body was so stiff that I was unable to roll over in bed without excruciating pain. I had test after test and no one could work out what was happening to me. The possibilities ranged from Ross River Fever to Meningococcal – which resulted in the Health Dept getting involved and all of my family taking a horrid anti biotic that turned their pee bright orange. I eventually started to recover with the aid of some heavy duty medication and left hospital after a few weeks. The final prognosis was a rare form of rheumatoid arthritis which I still need to manage today. In January 2003 my dream of getting on stage that October with GI Jane abs seemed crushed.

In late February 2003 I went back to training with Nunzio, almost 3 months after I fell ill. I was still on medication but I was determined that I wasn’t going to let the illness stop me from my goal. I had lost weight and muscle, so we had to go forward with what we had if I was to make in on stage in 8 months. I trained weights 4 days a week and many hours of cardio over the next months, getting gradually leaner at each weigh in. I had a single minded obsession and not once did I stray from the diet or not complete my training. My social life disappeared as I was always training or tired from training, and in October 2003 I stepped on stage for the first time at 48kgs and about 8% body fat.

I was still on medication from my illness and in hind sight it would have been better for my long term health to wait for 12 months before attempting to compete, but I wanted those abs more than anything in the whole world. I was lean, really lean and I finally had control over how I looked. Or so I thought.

After the euphoria of my first competition I started to eat “normally” again. In the first 3 days I put on 3 kgs and can I clearly recall looking at myself in the mirror and felt disgusted at how fat I had become. Within 6 weeks I was back to 55kgs and a new struggle with food and body image emerged. The feedback from the judges was that I was in great condition but I was too small and needed more muscle, so Nunzio and I worked on a plan that would see me sit out a year and then go back with more muscle. However I changed this plan and got back on stage 9 months later and then 15 months after that again. In this period of bodybuilding my weight ranged about 10 kgs each off season and the only way I could control the way I looked was to be in “competition preparation mode”. I convinced myself that I was carb intolerant and had a slow metabolism and felt I put on weight when I reintroduced carbs and other regular food to my diet. The reality is that my body was simply doing what normal a body does after a heavily restricted diet over a long period of time. This caused other eating disorder type behaviours; I was unhappy and in food jail.

In my third year of bodybuilding I realised that I was competing to keep those abs, and not because I was interested in sculpting a muscular physique. I needed to stop for my health, and my sanity. I didn’t get into great condition in that final year, and as I sat despondent back stage after my final competition a Powerlifting coach sat next to me and asked me what was wrong. We then had a conversation that would change my life and finally lead me to achieve the happiness and balance we all search for.

Nic was, amongst many other things, an International level Powerlifter that I knew from the gym I worked out at. He asked me why I was looking upset after my final figure comp, and I said I was “over” bodybuilding. I loved going to the gym and push myself and get strong and fit, but I found competition day a huge anti climax; there was no physical competition, no sweating or pain. I had worked for 12 months towards competition day, but on the big day I had to hang around for hours between sessions, just waiting for my turn; I was hungry and thirsty and I didn’t feel like the judges were taking any notice of me or acknowledging my hard work. I felt unfulfilled. I wanted ‘my turn to shine’ on stage and I wanted recognition for all my hard work. I also wanted to be able to measure my own improvement from one competition to the next. It is difficult to do that in bodybuilding.

Nic suggested I try Powerlifting, and explained that Powerlifting would offer that adrenal rush I was after. “I can do that,” I said. There are so many times those 4 little words have gotten me in to so much trouble, and this was to be no different.

I had always known that there was an athlete inside of me; however, I never dreamed I would end up being a strength athlete in my late 30s. My success is a great testament to the mantra that “it is never too late”. I started training with Nic in December 2005, I had to learn how to squat, bench and deadlift with correct technique and I progressed very quickly in the first few months. However coming in to my first competition the following April I was given a very rude, and painful, awakening when Nic introduced the “equipment.” Impossibly tight suits, belts wraps and bench shirts. Today I have fine white scars on my arms and legs left over from a couple of years of wearing this gear. This was a far cry from sequenced bikinis and high heels of figure bodybuilding. This was pain, adrenalin, fear and exhilaration all rolled into one. That feeling of walking out to my first competition squat in suit, knee wraps, power belt, weightlifting shoes and chalk is one I will carry with me forever; this was competition, this was what I was meant to do! Within the first 12 months of being a competitive Powerlifter I qualified to compete at the Nationals Titles. I had that sense of fulfilment at last.

The period following May 2007 was a very significant learning & development phase for me. Despite 18 months of lifting I was still eating like a figure competitor, and was severely struggling with the demands of training, work and life in general. I was fatigued all the time and my recovery was appalling. Enter an exercise physiologist called Liz who ‘broke me out of food jail’ and bought a refreshing scientific and factual perspective to nutrition. Within one week I had more energy and vitality. I remember walking down the street feeling like I was walking on air. I couldn’t believe how incorrectly an intelligent and experienced woman and athlete like me had been eating; I was a new person.

Before Liz, I was surviving on a diet cycle of protein shakes, egg whites, chicken, vegetables and the occasional oats. Put simply, I thought carbohydrates and fats were all bad. Of course, if someone continues to eat in a restricted way and, in particular, in a calorie-restricted way, the body stores fat and the metabolism slows down.

I have embarked on educational journey around nutrition, and I now eat like an athlete and can eat out with ease... My life doesn’t revolve around food. My social choices are not driven by what I can eat and when. I know what mobilises my metabolism . . . and it is very mobilised. I now eat whole eggs, the entire range of vegetables, nuts, avocados and even dark chocolate. In fact, 30 per cent of my diet is fat.

The first competition Liz mentored me through was a crucial one for my lifting career as I won the 56 kg division, and was selected in the Australian Team for the Commonwealth Powerlifting Titles in December 2007. I recall sitting at dinner after the National Titles and hearing my name called out as a team member, and the incredible excitement but also disbelief that I could achieve this in 2 short years of lifting.

I won a Silver medal in the 56kg Master 1 division at the Commonwealth Titles in Christchurch last December, and had an amazing experience being surrounded by other athletes that were as dedicated to their sport as I am. I met a Canadian female strength coach and elite lifter, Krista Schaus, who I have been working with since January and she has taken my nutrition and physique to a new level again. Krista has shown me how much more I can achieve both as a Powerlifter and through body composition changes that my previous expectations have been raised once more.

I have had good success and a wonderful time with powerlifting and my proudest moment was winning Bronze at the IPF Masters World Powerlifting Titles in Palm Springs last month.

Early this year I decided to follow my dream in health and wellness to provide motivation and hopefully inspiration to other women, and the occasional man too!

Over the past 8 years I have pushed myself to extraordinary lengths to achieve my ideal body and GI Jane abs. I have felt lost, out of control and frustrated for months and months on end at times. I gained and lost those abs more times than I can possibly count, but in the process I found my passion in life in the most unexpected way. As I sit here and write this I can truly say that I now have balance, wisdom, and an acceptance of myself.

My latest interview has just been posted over at Muscle Power Shop.

What are your expectations?
Yesterday's post was about commitment, and the need to treat your body with the same commitment you offer other areas of your life. After receiving a beautiful e-mail from a reader yesterday I realised that expectation goes hand in hand with commitment. So many of us have inappropriate and unrealistic expectations of our "ideal body", that when we fall short our commitment is challenged and we have an emotional response that results in us eating through the pantry once a week.
It is not reasonable to expect your body to loose x number of kilograms per week every week. There are so many variants in weight loss, so if you have been consistent all week and get on the scales and don't see a loss how do you react? If you get upset and then stay in a bad mood for the rest of the day you need to reassess your expectations. Scale weight is affected by your hydration levels, the amount of food in your GI tract, the amount of sodium eaten in the past 12 hours. If you are weight training while dieting you will be adding lean muscle, and a tough training session can cause fluid retention. Certainly over time you want to see the scales move down, but setting a weight loss number in your head and giving yourself a pass or fail is an inappropriate expectation that will set you up for failure.
Another area of unreasonable expectation is over planning and over thinking the menu. It is quite unreasonable to expect yourself to eat 100% clean every single day. Are you one of those people that wakes up on Monday and has your food all planned for the week, and expects no variations. You have done really well until Thursday lunch when you are starving (from eating too little for 3 days), and you have a small treat that then escalates into a full out binge. While your aim is to eat clean as much as possible, be realistic about yourself and the environment that you live in.
What goals have you set for yourself in obtaining your ideal body? Ask yourself if they are appropriate and achievable, and if not adjust them. You are more likely get reach your goal sooner and with a much happier life if you set realistic expectations.

Sunday, November 09, 2008

I was at a beautiful wedding yesterday of a couple that have been together for 6 years. While the ceremony was very modern it was clear that not only the bride and groom, but both families, were very committed to the relationship and making it work.

We live in such a disposable, instant gratification world where it is so easy to change jobs, change houses, change partners, change cars, change phones that I wonder if we have lost the ability to pursue our commitments?

This is obvious when we look at the massive weight loss market. Every gym chain has their 12 week challenges, every supplement company their 7 day detox plan, every weight loss company their "8kgs in 8 weeks" program. What sort of commitment is 8-12 weeks? What long term lifestyle change can possibly be effected in 12 weeks? How is it that the general public believes that the past years of over indulgence can be reversed in 12 weeks? Are we really that gullible about getting healthy? When did we get to the point when we gave up control over the quality of our lives and our appearance?

When are we going to understand that getting fit, healthy and lean is a lifestyle choice that takes commitment every day for the rest of our lives?"

It is such a shame when I see people in tears about the effects of yo-yo dieting and their perceived lack of control over their body. The magic answer they seek is personal responsibility and commitment. There is no lack of education and research on what is good for us, yet we abdicate personal responsibility at morning tea or lunch everyday when we choose the bad options.

Success in gaining a better body is the same as a successful marriage; it takes time, persistence, and commitment.


Saturday, November 08, 2008

I don't normally post twice in a day, however the events of yesterday have really inspired me to sit at the laptop again this morning.

As mentioned I am in Melbourne, and I caught up with 2 distance clients that I very rarely see face to face. When I opened the door to see them I had the same immediate response each time. "Wow you look fabulous".

I have all my clients go on the basic supplement protocols that include fish oil, multi's, magnesium, and food plans with water, protein and vegetable goals that I have blogged about recently. I often get phone calls and e-mails telling me how great people feel after just doing the basics for a while and I guess I am at the point where I actually expect that response. I had a chat recently to a male client who had a goal of being able to go back to playing competitive soccer next year and he called me to say he had just signed up for next years season and put it down to the improvement in his joints since taking fish oil.

The basics are so simple, they don't cost a bomb, everyone can do it and they effect your quality of life profoundly. There is no secret ingredient, no special concoctions or magic pills, it is simply making a choice to nurture your body with healthful food.

Typical day's food

Yesterday I was asked what I eat in a typical day, and while there really are no typical days right now as I am just living a healthy life, this is what I ate yesterday. I didn't train yesterday so there is no work out nutrition, however I did have about 5 cups of green tea as well as the usual 3 litres or so of water. I am in Mebourne this weekend, so I am eating out more than usual

Breakfast; oats, protein powder, soy milk.

Brunch; herb and goats cheese omlete, 2 x long blacks

Lunch; chicken, avocado salad (there were lots of other veges in it too), latte.

Snack; Protein shake (WPC) and handful pecans

Dinner: antipasto & sourdough, chicken and tomato salad, dark chocolate & strawberry pizza, hot chocolate.

Dinner was my free meal for the week, however if it wasn't I would have had just the chicken salad and some antipasto.

When I am at home I love to have mince at breakfast, and omletes at dinner but I do mix it up so I don't get bored.

I always carry a small container of nuts with me, so if I am on the run I can drop into a coffee shop grab a latte and have some nuts with it as a snack. I wouldn't do this if I was in heavy training but for now it is a an easy and quick snack.

Friday, November 07, 2008

If only I could loose 3 kilos, then I'd be happy!

This morning I am using my husband's laptop to post my blog and I was looking through some old photos, and this one inspired today's post. All my bodybuilding pics are on his computer so I don't see them daily as I do with stuff on my laptop.
Why did I choose this picture? Well, this shot is taken about 6 weeks before my last figure competition in 2005 and while I have no idea what weight I was I am guessing I was about 3 or 4 kilos leaner than I am now. I am still a little heavy since returning from the US, and hear myself saying the the 3kg loss chant daily
I hear the chant weekly from clients, friends and other people that I chat to all the time. "If only I were xkgs lighter I'd be happy."
So let's talk about those 3-4 kgs. If I really made the effort, this is what it would take. I would need to spend the next 8-10 weeks saying no to all those dinner and party invitations, I would have to say goodbye to Sunday morning sleep ins with the late yummy brunch. I'd need to be extremely vigilant with my food and pack all my meals for work, and probably ring ahead at events to ensure I could get what I needed. My supplement bill would go through the roof and in about 4 weeks I'd be sick of the sight of lean protein and vegetables. I'd be in bed by 8pm and out by 5am, and my friends would have stopped asking me out because I would always say no.
Maybe those extra kgs are there to remind us that there is always a price, or a sacrifice to everything we want to achieve, and maybe we need to look a little deeper than our abs for happiness?
So breakfast - egg whites and spinach or smoked salmon omelet at a great cafe down the road?

Thursday, November 06, 2008

My thoughts on beautiful skin

As a woman over 40 I have pretty extensive experience trying all kinds of skin treatment, like the rest of you. Everyone has different routines and beliefs on what works and what doesn't. I am certainly no expert when it comes to skin care, however I have my views and today's post is all about my opinion.

It is my belief that beautiful skin comes from the inside. I am not talking about inner beauty radiating, I am talking about what you eat, drink and how you treat your body. I believe that the outside reflects what is happening on the inside. Now, this doesn't mean I don't pay attention to cleansing and moisturising etc, it just means that without healthy skin it is a lot harder to have beautiful skin.

My beauty routine looks like this;
  • lots of water,
  • fish oil and evening primrose oil,
  • essential fats in my diet
  • a diet filled with antioxidants for cell repair,
  • good quality sleep,
  • regular exercise,
  • limited alcohol,
  • limited sugar and junk food,
  • no smoking

I also believe in a good skin routine with organic products, such as my beloved Kosmea which is a fabulous Australian product. I know I talk a lot about stress, but the effects of stress not only increase the waist line but show heavily in the face especially when it results in a lack of sleep.

Today is Friday and is a "personal investment day" for me, so I am off for a physio appointment then a relaxing breakfast with my little sister.

Have a healthy and harmonious day!


Wednesday, November 05, 2008

A few tips to drop a couple of kilos.

I the past 2 weeks I have been attending a few events and corporate lunches and without exception there is at least 5 people (both male and female) who come and ask for a few tips on how to drop some weight. I tell them all the same thing, so with end of year parties approaching I felt it was timely to publish my Basic Lifestyle Program.

I like to keep things simple and to the point so my basics are centered around building muscle to enhance your metabolism, and feeding your body healthful organic food so it can perform as it was designed.


  • Eat protein at every meal. This includes food such as eggs, lean meats, seafood, cottage cheese, ricotta cheese, protein shakes.
  • Eat plenty of essential fats. These come from nuts, avocados and meats.
  • Eat vegetables as often as you can.
  • Learn about portion control.
  • Eat organic as often as possible.
  • Have a small treat every other day.
  • Drink at least 2.5 litres of water per day.
  • Limit alcohol to a maximum of 2 glasses of wine per day.


  • Weight train in a gym 3 days a week.
  • Go for a walk 3 times a week.
  • Have a protein shake after you finish weight training with some fruit, honey or similar.


  • Everyone should take a high quality fish oil - everyone!!
  • Take a multi vitamin daily.
  • Take a magnesium supplement to assist with relaxation and sleep before bed.


  • Stress will hamper any weight loss attempts and will in fact increase your waist line, so addressing stress is paramount.

So that is it. Simple really! Don't ready anything else into it that isn't there. Don't ask about low carb vs high carb, or high fat vs low fat, or calories because it doesn't matter. This is a lifestyle and we need to be able to live it easily every day without second guessing everything we put in our mouths.

Well, I am off for a walk.


Tuesday, November 04, 2008


I finished at the hairdresser at 10am yesterday morning before the cup lunch and the salon recommended a store I should visit on the way home to just in case they may have a dress that would be suitable for lunch. Well they hit the jack pot and within 20 minutes I walked out of the store with a great new black dress and a pair of 10m heels.
Now when I was trying all of this on I didn't really take notice of the 10cm heel, other than thinking that there were 'a little high'. Well, there were high and luckily I was seated for most of the day, however the 6 block walk from the lunch to the car park was total torture, and by the time I reached my car my legs where shaking like I had done 10 sets of jump squats. On the bright side they looked fabulous and I was a finalist in The Best Shoes competition. Naturally I felt justified in not going to the gym yesterday afternoon. Who was it that said beauty is pain?
Lunch was great and the food was just as I had predicted; a seafood entree followed by chicken and broccoli and a salsa sauce. Perfect! Dessert was panacotta with a small amount of fruit and I decided that would be my afternoon tea snack as it is not only my favourite dessert, but a pretty figure friendly one at that. Lunch was at the Stamford Plaza and I had a group of wonderful business associates and friends there and really loved the whole day.
This morning I am off the the gym to do a quick work out. Probably 2 lower body/upper body super sets, followed by 8 30 second intervals on the rower. Just enough to get my metabolism firing for the day and my muscles in some form of condition.

Monday, November 03, 2008

What is for lunch today?

Like just about every other working girl in the city, I am off for a Melbourne cup lunch at a fancy hotel. As I didn't get around to buying a new dress, I think I will be borrowing from my daughter. As much as I am happy to recylce from last year, the past 12 months of powerlifting and intentionally going up a weight category has resulted in a 4kg larger Lisa, so my size 8 dresses just don't fit anymore. I do have new shoes though - a girl can't go without new shoes!
I have a hair appointment at 9am for an upstyle, although I have recently had quite a bit cut of my long hair I am not sure what we will do today. I don't like hats so I always get a creative hair up to compensate. I had a manicure 1 week ago for the first time in about 12 months, so this morning I have attempted to paint my own nails for being a gym rat for months on end really is easy!
So what is on the menu? I don't know, and I haven't called in advance or organised anything special. It has been my experience at these corporate events that over the past 3-5 years all top restaurants and hotels always provide fresh, healthful food that is cooked almost according to the "Strength and Beauty" guide. It will be a small starter of salad and seafood and the main will be a choice of high quality lean meat and sauteed vegetables. Easy! I won't have the bread, and I will skip dessert as I am having my free meal this week at the wedding I am going to on the weekend.
I won't be drinking alcohol as it is not good for my joints right now, but a couple of glasses of either red or white wine would normally be on the menu for me. Both red and white wine contain reserveratrol which is an anti oxidant and is great for our health.
I am spending this morning getting ready and "making myself beautiful", and this afternoon after it is all over I will have the luxury of a work out in a relatively empty gym; perfect day.


Sunday, November 02, 2008

Stressed and sick?
As you know I am off season from my lifting. This doesn't mean I am not training at all, it just means that I am taking a break from my usual regime and letting the body and mind recover. I have loosened up my nutrition somewhat and am relaxing in general. I finished my competitive season almost 5 weeks ago, and over the past week I have been quite unwell. It is the return of an old illness and nothing that can't be managed but it got me thinking why has it happened now? Given the way I push myself when I am leading up to a comp, you would think that the joints would give in under heavy squatting, not from sleeping in and going out with friends.

Before my last comp I had great plans of spending my off season working on my business, doing lots of fun training, eating out and going to all the parties that I always say no to. However I wonder if my jumping straight back into a whole series of different activities was too much for my mind and body to cope with? My body is telling me to slow down, and these days I certainly listen to it, as I appreciate that my health is the most important thing I have in my life (outside of family).

So here is the question I put to myself....." am I run down from the past year, or am I run down from the past 15 years?"

Every client I see shows signs of stress and some even adrenal fatigue. Why would I be any different to everyone else? These past few days when I haven't "worked" I have needed to clean my apartment, drop my teenagers to multiple destinations (twice at 4.30am!!), return phone calls that I have put off, shop for food, arrange a new mobile for my daughter who lost hers on sat, have a physio session on my elbow, have an acupuncture session, train, and go to the Uni PL club to help a client lifting in 4 weeks. The things I didn't get around to like finish my taxes, buying a new outfit for Melb cup (might have to recycle), cleaning the car will just be put back on the list of things to do. There is nothing special about this list, and it is a similar list that I have been living with for as long as I can remember. This is chronic stress! We all have it, and it makes us sick, and I am sick right now.

When we are sick and stressed we normally take a few days off, lie in bed and when we are feeling better we get back into it, right? Well, I am over it. I currently work part-time (by choice), and rather than plan to rule the world on my days "off", today I have no plans. I need time to pick up the dry cleaning, clean the car, shop for food and all this takes time and stresses me if it is not done. I also need to get well and keep myself healthy. So rather than "days off", maybe I should call them "health investment days".

Stress is a major cause of disease and we can control it so much more than we think, so I am going to practise what I preach and just look after me and my family today - conquering the world will have to wait!


Saturday, November 01, 2008

Sleep again....

I am going back to the subject of sleep again, because of a number of queries I have had about the "wee stop" issue. Let me state again, you should not need to wake in the middle of the night to go to the toilet. I drink just as much water as you and trust me, you can get your 8 hours without wetting the bed. When you wake consistently each night at the same time for your wee stop, it is not your body's need to urinate at all; it is in fact your body signalling an issue with the rejuvenation of your organs. Chinese medicine says that waking between 1-3am indicates issues with your liver meridian, 3-5am is the lung meridian etc. So if you wake every night between 1 -3am it is likely a liver meridian issue (stress and anger), than the real need to wee. I had this issue for years and never thought it was an issue and put it down to being "normal". However this type of "normal" will slow weight loss, and keep you stressed and anxious. Now before you say you aren't stressed let me tell you that stress is a strange thing, because we can convince ourselves, and others, that we are fine but ultimately your body does not lie. If you are waking consistently at this time you are stressed, anxious or fatigued.

It is important to have a good sleeping environment and do all the things I mentioned in an earlier post, however you also need to include some protocols to help your adrenal glands repair. I would suggest daily supplementation with a herbal adaptagen such as holy basil or rhodiola and adding the amino acid L-Tyrosone breakfast and lunch particularly if you train more than a few times a week. Regular sauna's and massage to assist with recovery will go a long way as well. None of these things will be harmful and what have you got to lose?


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